Neo Afro Abstraction is one of many thematic concepts that I have used recently in my 55 year practice. It is a referential term that puts a context to my work as an artist rooted in Classical African American culture who has added to a studio practice and who has a degree in Studio Arts / Painting from a Euro American University ( Syracuse University Class of 2007 ) I left in 1973 to pursue my career. I was 55 when I returned full time and completed 2 1/2 years in two full years and a summer session.
These drawings / paintings represent a small part of an intense 5 year post BFA research exploring free form expressive / abstract compositions. Numerous style groupings resulted from the work. These are some examples.
As a result of my years as a Professional Multi Disciplinary Artist / Educator , I found that having a strong Identity counts strong if you are working in the professional Culture Industry where Multi Culturalism has it's best chance of proliferating in a sea of antagonistic Americana Educational Theory. Ancestral Authenticity is sometimes a difficult thing to attain among African American Artists because we are dual cultured and the African aspect of our persona is steeped in protest and progressivism. That potential socially and professionally limiting issue can be a plus or a minus wen it comes to the type of career you will have. I was raised in an original multi /cultural city, NYC. I was a full artist from the Black Arts Tradition of Harlem and the Bronx, NYC when I left home for college. My love of experimentation took me away from the social commentary of traditional figurative drawing and portraiture of my teen to 20+ years.
In the "Ethnic" Culture Industry, only Black Identity counts strong. In School at the High School / Art School level,
Universal Consciousness counts because of the policy based Multiculturalism that is Law. School is as much social education as it is academic education. At the College level it's about Your identification with Art History and the practice of creating art. Also, the pillars of education and experience that make your work authentic to yourself and the Social Genre that you choose to study and develop your senior collection and professional career. Contrary to popular thinking, You design your College Career. That notion among self taught artists that college is a spoiler or indoctrination is absurd. After all,
who do self taught artists have to look at to be inspired?
... to understand that medium use, how to blend color, work wet, to solve those anatomical issues of fingers, ears, foreshortening, universal proportions of the Art figure VS the Fashion 9 head figure?
YOU KNOW THE ANSWER TO THAT